Best Ankle Braces Basketball
Are you trying to find the best ankle braces for basketball?
Basketball is an intense game. It involves running up and down a court, as well as twisting and leaping as you try to avoid other players and still make a basket.
This places tremendous amounts of strain on our bodies, and it is too easy to forget that one wrong move can spell disaster for our joints.
Although your body may have responded perfectly to you for days or years before hand, if you land poorly or get anything out of sync, chances are you are looking at an ankle injury.
Ankle injuries are common in basketball, and can quickly put an end to your game.
It can take weeks or even months to recover properly from an injury, and that’s time that could be better spent playing basketball.
Ankle braces are a way to get back in the game as early as possible.
An ankle brace works by immobilizing the joint, preventing reinjury of it through twisting or folding of the already weak ankle joint while it heals.
By wearing an ankle brace, you can speed healing time by preventing reinjury from accidentally turning your ankle the wrong way while you recover.
Ankle braces can also be used during game play itself to prevent reinjury of weak ankles, and to offer added stabilization.
Many of them feature bilateral design so that they can be used on either ankle, and are breathable, padded, and comfortable to wear.
Unlike shoes where you might enjoy a stylish appearance, ankle braces are usually purely utilitarian, and performance is preferred before any kind of aesthetic.
When choosing what ankle brace is right for you, it’s important to take into consideration your personal needs.
There are a variety of different ankle braces out there, and which one you need depends on your style of play, how much support you need, and whether you need support in other areas such as the foot or the lower leg.
In the same way that there are different types of basketball shoes which support wide feet, flat feet, your arch and so on, there are distinct types of ankle braces which can support your ankles.
Let’s take a look at the 7 top ankle braces, what makes them different, and what each of these types excel at.
Top 7 Ankle Braces For Basketball
1. ASO Ankle Stabilizer
This ankle brace for basketball has the largest size range of any of the braces mentioned. If you have a particularly large or small foot, look no farther than this brace, as most do not come in a size range as wide as this one.
The ASO Ankle Stabilizer comes in as small as a tiny XXS to an XXXL. A large range in other braces might be XS to XL, and that is all.
On top of this, the brace offers color options.
Aesthetics aren’t a big deal when it comes down to your ankle brace (it’s probably going to be covered up by a shoe anyway) but the choice between black and white is fairly abnormal for a brace.
Color and sizing don’t mean anything if the brace doesn’t work however, so how does this brace stand up to injuries?
The brace has a half boot style that mixes both lace-up and velcro for added security. It is made out ballistic material so that it is both extremely light weight, and extremely durable.
It features a low profile design that allows you to fit the brace inside of a shoe, so you can continue about your day while wearing the boot.
It is also machine washable, making it a practical choice for everyday wear.
The ASO Ankle Stabilizer is a popular choice for athletes, with over 250 colleges, including Yale University, making regular use of the brace.
Even the US Navel Academy and the US Coast Guard make use of this brace, which says a lot about how effective it is.
Many people report that this brace is perfect for sports, and the happy customers leaving 5 star reviews are often basketball players.
Customers have generally loved the brace, saying it is the best one they have tried out of many. If you’re not sure what you need in a brace, this is probably a great choice for you.
2. Zamst A2-DX Strong Support Ankle Brace
Professional basketball players love this brace.
It has been wildly popular since Golden State Warriors star Steph Curry started using the brace to protect his ankles.
The brace comes in black and white, and features a number of features useful to players such as an anti-migration system that prevents the brace from slipping during play, and a three-way support system that reduces the chances of rolling your ankle.
This ankle brace needs to be purchased for your specific ankle.
You need to choose both a size and whether it is a right or left foot, since part of the design is its ergonomic fit.
You’ll need to size up if you are between sizes, and if you have wide feet, this may not be the brace for you. Customers report the brace being very uncomfortable with wide feet.
3. McDavid 195 Ankle Brace
This ankle brace is one of the few out there to offer more than one color as an option. It comes in grays as well as blacks.
While this might not impress those hoping to get a hot pink or neon green wrap to go with the rest of their sports equipment, its quite different to have any color options at all when it comes down to ankle braces.
This brace comes in sizes extra small through extra large, making it likely you will find a brace that fits you.
When it comes down to stability, this brace isn’t playing around. It is level 3 protection—medical grade, and also the highest grade of stability possible.
This brace offers 6 different straps that allow you to immobilize your joint much the same way you tape it up.
It features a breathable tongue to make every day use more comfortable, and the nylon and vinyl materials make for a tough outer shell that resists damage.
The streamlined design of this brace trims down bulkiness, and while aesthetics aren’t a big concern with braces, makes the brace a little more discrete.
If you’d rather not advertise to the entire world you’re injured, this brace offers great protection with a minimum of fuss.
You can wear this brace over a sock and under a shoe, so no one ever has to know you are wearing it. A study on this particular brace found that using it during game play reduced injuries by as much as 300%.
If you’re looking for an even mix of all the best features generally found in a brace, this is the one for you.
This is also one of the rare braces that have little to no cons. It’s light weight, and easy to get on and off on top of all of its other features.
The only real complaints mentioned by customers is that sizing can be difficult to pull off. If the incorrect size is used, it can make an injury more painful than it already is.
To avoid this, size up or find a place to try it on before purchasing.
4. Cramer Active Ankle T1 Rigid Ankle Brace
If you absolutely must have stability and any rolls or bends in the ankle is unacceptable, this brace will immobilize your joint.
It uses a rigid design with hardware that prevents rolling of the ankle, while still allowing other types of ankle motion.
This ankle brace is designed with basketball in mind, but probably isn’t the best choice for daily wear or recovering injuries.
Instead, consider this ankle brace for recent sprains, or other injuries that require powerful stabilization.
Many people have used this for serious ankle issues at the advice of their doctor, and have reported that the rigid ankle brace has made a difference.
If you have a serious injury that needs protected now, this is a good brace choice.
5. Liomore Ankle Support
If you just want a quick option that takes no thought to use, the Liomore Ankle Support is the ideal ankle brace.
The Liomore features a unique style not used anywhere else in this article. Unlike the other braces, the Liomore ankle brace uses stretch fit to help immobilize the joint.
That means this brace comes in just one size, and is perfect for both men and women, any shoe size, and either ankle.
It comes with an additional velcro strap to help add stability and better secure the brace.
Unlike many of the other braces, this ankle brace is designed to be breathable and comfortable for every day use.
If you’re in a recovery period for the long haul, this ankle brace could be ideal, especially if you don’t plan to play basketball while recovering.
It’s also easy to wash and dry, which makes the ankle support more hygienic than other types.
This style does come with its cons.
Sliding an ankle brace onto an injured ankle could be painful, and the padding on the underside of the foot combined with an open heel may make maintaining balance while running more difficult.
It may not be a good choice for serious injuries either, as it does not provide the same level of support as other braces.
If you have arthritis, tendonitis, or other chronic injuries, this ankle brace may be a good option since getting the ankle brace on won’t be as much of a struggle.
Just like most of the other braces, this one only comes in one color, and has very little to define it in terms of aesthetics.
This is pretty common in ankle braces.
If you are just wearing one brace, this may feel a little bit bulky compared to not having a brace on at all, but is an improvement over a long ace bandage in terms of how noticeable that bulky feeling is.
6. McDavid 199 Lace-Up Ankle Brace
If you have a serious ankle injury, you want an ankle brace that will insure your ankle doesn’t move no matter what you do to it.
The McDavid 199 Lace-Up Ankle Brace is that brace.
The heavy duty lace-up style looks more like a high end sneaker than it does a brace, with lacing that goes from top to bottom.
Like most ankle braces, this brace only comes in black, but the company has added a little bit of accent color to give it more style.
The tips of the laces feature a splash of color, and so does the final eyelet. Although modest, these changes really brighten up the look of the brace.
The material used to make the brace is Polyester and vinyl. The vinyl is for the mesh liner on the inside.
The security of the product is so good, it is considered a medical grade brace.
This is not a good brace for someone who wants to just slide in and go.
The extra security the ankle brace provides comes in the form of the sturdy lacing system. If you prefer a quick velcro for your brace, you will want to look at a different style.
Otherwise, this is a great choice for serious injuries all the way down to preventative bracing.
There’s good evidence that lace-up ankle braces can reduce the incidence of ankle injuries.
A study published in the American Journal of Sports Medicine found that while they did not reduce the severity of injuries, they did reduce the likelihood that they would happen.
The McDavid 199 Lace-up Ankle Brace comes in a variety of sizing, making it easy to get a good fit. Sizes run from extra small to extra large.
This brace is also a good choice for foot support, as it features built in arch support right into the brace.
This is a great option for people who want maximum security for their ankles, or need additional support elsewhere in the lower leg or foot.
If you need a brace to throw in your sports bag for emergencies, whether that be your own or a team mates, this ankle brace covers a broad enough range of sizes and injury types to be a great fit.
7. Venom Neoprene Ankle Brace
Sometimes it’s not just about the ankle.
If you have a foot strain, tendonitis, or other related injury in the area, you may need a different type of support compared to other types of ankle brace.
The Venom neoprene ankle brace is a little bit different compared to other ankle brace styles.
As the name suggests, the ankle brace is mostly made of neoprene.
Neoprene is a very supportive material, and is popular in ankle braces because of how well it can secure weak joints.
Unfortunately a draw back to this is that it isn’t very breathable.
This brace works well for both men and women, and is a comfortable fit for either foot.
It’s perfect to keep on hand in case of future injury, since you won’t know which ankle will give months down the road.
This brace also has an excellent strapping system, with a double strap option that allows you to secure the brace in different ways.
This gives you the freedom to immobilize the joint in a way that suits your injury best.
The Venom Neoprene Ankle Brace doesn’t have quite the same size selection as other ankle braces. It comes in 3 sizes.
The sizes are small, medium and large. The “Small” size fits US shoe size 7 and lower, the medium fits 7.5 to 9.5, and large fits 10 to 13 sizes.
If you happen to be outside this range, the manufacturers recommend sizing up if at all possible.
Venom only comes in black as a color, with the Venom logo prominently displayed.
Generally speaking aesthetics are not a big consideration when looking for an ankle brace, but if how it looks is important to you, this ankle brace probably shouldn’t be your pick.
This brace is best for people who are looking for foot support as well as ankle support, have tendonitis, or need lower leg support.
Benefits of Wearing an Ankle Brace in Basketball
Ankle braces work by providing support to the ankle joint and the surrounding area.
There are two major ways of doing this, a figure eight style that wraps around the leg, and a lace up style that secures the ankle much like a pair of shoes.
The wraps act to secure the ankle, limiting the motion of the joint so that while the joint still works for ordinary function, it is less able to move in a way that injures the joint.
The brace protects your ankle from folding over during sharp twists and turns the game of basketball is known for.
When your ankle is injured, the joint is painful to move, and even normal use can result in sharp pain shooting up your leg.
This can even lead to other injuries, as your body overcompensates for the injured joint and places added strain on other parts of the body. The solution is an ankle brace.
They work by securing the area that is prone to injury, and helping to stabilize and promote healing to the area.
They can also work as a preventative, supporting the ankles during rough play so that an injury is less likely to happen.
Among the many things an ankle brace can do, the top 3 reasons people purchase them include:
Stabilizing an injured joint
Promoting faster healing
Avoiding further injury
Preventing injury in the first place
Basketball is by its very nature, a game that is tough on joints.
It involves running up and down the court at high speeds, quick turns and sudden stops, and leaping in the air in order to make a basket.
Falls are also inevitable, as people bump into each other in an effort to block shots and obtain control of the ball.
You can’t win if you play conservatively, and most basketball players are giving their game everything they have.
That means some inspiring game play, but also greater risk of injury.
A sudden injury can mean sitting out the rest of the season for a basketball player, and for many that is simply unacceptable.
This is where the true benefits of wearing an ankle brace for basketball comes in.
If the brace is worn before any injury takes place, it can reduce the risk of getting an injury in the first place.
After an injury, the only way to continue playing the game is to strap on an ankle brace.
Even if you’re forced onto a bench because of an injury, wearing a brace can promote healing and help you get back in the game faster.
Ankle braces are even helpful after an injury has healed.
If your ankles are still weak, or are prone to injury, an ankle brace can provide the support you need to keep in the game.
Finally, if you have a chronic condition, such as arthritis or tendonitis, that is making it harder for you to play the game an ankle brace can help.
Ankle braces provide compression, which can be comforting and healing to the people who wear them.
There are many benefits to wearing an ankle brace, and few reasons to avoid them.
If weak ankles are holding you back from a game, then an ankle brace may be the solution to your problems.
There’s no need to risk a new injury, or make an old injury worse, by putting your delicate ankles at risk.
Bracing your ankles can save a lot of damage, and is a sensible choice for any serious basketball player.
Ankle braces are a useful tool in the arsenal of a passionate basketball player.
They can be used in a variety of different ways, from offering added support for weak or recently injured ankles during game play, to speed the healing of an injured ankle while you are off, or to prevent reinjury of the ankle.
Support is a powerful tool for your joints, and your ankle is one of the most important for a basketball player to protect.
It’s a sound practice to use ankle braces to protect weakened ankles, giving them a chance to heal naturally.
If you fail to use an ankle brace or other kind of ankle support on an injured ankle, you run the risk of injuring it even more every time you move.
Even if you’re very careful, one bend in the wrong direction can set you up for a longer healing time.
This is why if you visit a doctor for your injured ankle, an ankle brace is likely to be part of their recommendations for recovery.
In previous years, podiatrists have recommended against using ankle braces to prevent injuries in adolescents, but in recent years this is changing.
Thanks to two landmark studies that showed a two-fold reduction in injuries of those who wore ankle braces as a preventative, compared to those who did not, many doctors are now recommending the use of ankle braces to prevent injury in football and basketball.
If you want to stay healthy and still play the game you love, ankle braces should be part of your plan. Keep them handy and keep your joints safe in every game you play.
Even problems such as arthritis and tendonitis can potentially benefit from the use of ankle braces, so there’s no reason not to grab them.
Ankle braces are here to stay, and they’re only getting more innovative as time goes on.
If you’re not sure what you need in a brace, look at the 5 options we’ve shown in this article and compare them carefully.